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GLOBEFISH - Information and Analysis on World Fish Trade

WTO framework for international market access in fisheries and aquaculture

02/06/2014 - 04/06/2014

A joint workshop organized by FAO and INFOSAMAK under the patronage of the Ministry of Agriculture and Marine Fisheries of Morocco, Casablanca, Morocco, 2-4 June 2014.

Fisheries and aquaculture play an important role in the economies of the Middle East North Africa (MENA) region. Fish processing for export in many of these countries represents a significant source of foreign currency earnings and employment. With growing global demand for fish products, this sector has opportunities for growth. The multi-lateral rules based framework of the WTO plays an important role in governing international fish trade, including exports originating from the MENA region. Other emerging issues such as the increased use of seafood eco-labels and product traceability schemes by the major seafood importing markets can create both opportunities and challenges for seafood exporters from developing countries. Finally, the importance of aquaculture to fish production and exports is growing worldwide, as well as in a number of countries in the MENA region. In this regard, there is a need for regional capacity-building on issues pertaining to WTO and international fisheries trade.

FAO and INFOSAMAK organized the workshop under the patronage of the Ministry of Agriculture and Marine Fisheries of Morocco, Casablanca, Morocco, 2-4 June 2014. This joint regional workshop on “the WTO Framework for International Market Access in Fisheries and Aquaculture” was facilitated by expert presentations from FAO, WTO, INFOSAMAK and the University of Stravergas, Norway. Participants from eleven countries contributed national presentations, namely Bahrain, Iraq, Libya, Mauritania, Morocco, Oman, Palestine, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates and Yemen. Aquaculture development and increased South-South cooperation in fish production and trade were key recommendations coming out of the round table discussions.

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